Over 23,000 Canadians will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year and more than 5,000 will die from the disease. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and to mark this annual event, the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer is highlighting stories of breast cancer patients who share their experiences throughout their cancer journey in the Partnership’s unscripted video series about cancer, “The Truth of It”.
The Truth of It is the first pan-Canadian online video series to document a wide range of powerful, real stories of patients sharing experiences from their cancer journey in their own words. Featuring more than 30 interviews with cancer patients and survivors from across Canada, The Truth of It also includes discussions with 12 women diagnosed with breast cancer. Additional interviews will be added in the coming weeks.
Janet Belray is one of the patients featured in the video series. An artist and a mother of two young boys, Janet was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 40. She now has stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.
“When I was first diagnosed, I had a hard time finding other people who shared my situation, especially being a mom with a baby and a toddler,” said Belray. “Hearing what other people have gone through has helped me tremendously throughout my entire journey. I have learned so much from listening to others. I hope that hearing my story can now in turn help in some small way others who are in need of both emotional and practical support.”
In her interview for the video, Janet discusses how to be your own advocate and how to talk with your children, friends and family about the disease. For Janet, this meant seeking the support of professionals who explained that kids benefit from an open and honest approach. Additionally, Janet has a keen interest in keeping up with the latest research for breast cancer and has a strong belief in empowering individuals to understand and participate in decisions pertaining to their treatment. While every person’s cancer journey is unique, common themes along the way mean that patients can learn from one another’s experiences.
By providing candid accounts of the personal impact of cancer, The Truth of It serves as an educational resource for health care professionals as well as patients, survivors and others with a personal connection to cancer. In addition to breast cancer survivors, The Truth of It features interviews with Canadians aged 20 to 73 who have been diagnosed with different types of cancer, including colorectal, lung, testicular, and ovarian cancer. Viewers can choose to watch individual stories or compilations of multiple interview clips that deal with challenges common to the cancer journey such as receiving the diagnosis, telling friends and family, talking to kids, body image, rural living and practical advice.
Visit Cancer View Canada for more information and to see The Truth of It: an unscripted video series about cancer.